Nicole Karstedt stands in front of a group of 20 or so school-aged children answering questions as quickly as they are asked.
Karstedt is a teacher who runs Georgia’s Mobile Dairy Classroom, a 30-foot mobile dairy barn that is used to teach Georgia school children about dairy farming and its impact on their local communities. Last Friday she was invited to speak at the Sonoraville Recreation Complex to give demonstrations during the Dizzy Dean World Series.
Karstedt spoke to 250 children on Friday and over the past year she has visited 200 schools in Georgia.
“I teach kids about the value of milk on their health, where milk comes from, how it is processed and produced,” Kedstedt said.
The program is sponsored the Georgia Dairy Farmers Association. S Richard and Marilyn Acree, of Sonoraville, invited Karstedt to speak.
The Acree’s are retired dairy farmers. Richard, who spent his life milking cows and immediately saw the advan-tages of a program like the Mobile Dairy Classroom.
“So many children these days have never seen a cow, they have never seen a cow milked, especially,” said Rich-ard.
He believes that the Mobile Dairy Classroom will help children understand where their food comes from and how it goes from the farm to the table.
“It is better for consumers to be educated about their food sources,” said Richard. “The more kids and adults understand about food and food production the better. Nicole helps, with grass roots, to educate the children early.”
According to Marilyn, the kids not only find it informative, they also find it entertaining.
“Their eyes really light up and they are full of questions,” said Marilyn.
The children at Sonoraville got to meet Molly, a Jersey Cow on loan from Berry College. Karstedt demonstrated how to milk a cow by hand and by using automate milking equipment. Karstedt also told the children that Molly produces six gallons of milk a day and explained how milk was processed and pasteurized.
For more information on the Mobile Dairy Classroom visit www.milkcow.org.